Scotland business

First oil flows from Golden Eagle field in North Sea

Aerial view of Golden Eagle Development Image copyright Nexen
Image caption The Golden Eagle development is expected to reach peak production of about 70,000 barrels a day in 2015

Oil production has started at the major Golden Eagle development in the UK North Sea, according to operators Nexen Petroleum UK.

The development currently has two wells with the potential to produce about 18,000 barrels of oil per day.

Eventually 15 production wells and six water injection wells will be drilled.

The Golden Eagle Area Development (GEAD) is expected to reach peak production of about 70,000 barrels per day in 2015.

The project, which includes the Golden Eagle, Peregrine and Solitaire fields, lies about 70km (44 miles) north-east of Aberdeen.

Nexen, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chinese offshore oil producer CNOOC, has 36.54% interest in the development.

The remaining interests are held by Maersk Oil North Sea UK (31.56%), Suncor Energy UK (26.69%) and Edinburgh oil and Gas (5.21%).

'Great achievement'

CNOOC chief executive Li Fanrong said: "GEAD was delivered on schedule, on budget, and to world-class safety standards.

"The GEAD supported in excess of 2,500 jobs in the UK and makes a significant production contribution to the company in the near future."

Maersk Oil UK managing director Martin Rune Pedersen said: "Today's announcement represents a great achievement by the Golden Eagle project teams.

"A project of this scale is important for the UK North Sea and for Maersk Oil - to deliver it safely, on time and on budget is an excellent performance."

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